ePVision PHD-VRX & VRX2 Owners Thread - Page 80 - AVS Forum
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post #2371 of 2392 Old 01-09-2015, 08:13 AM - Thread Starter
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Can you describe it better?

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Abundant OTA television is what makes this country different from all others. Lets keep it this way. If you like Wi-Fi so much, OTA fits right in. After all, it is wireless.
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post #2372 of 2392 Old 01-10-2015, 02:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post
Can you describe it better?

From what I can remember (and this may not be very accurate) it acted like the VRX2 was "using all the signal strength" (the meter on the TV would confirm lower signal strength). I believe it looked very similar to "normal drop-outs" (the screen divided into 5 or 6 horizontal sections, with each section behaving separately). This is what the current VRX2 does occasionally on start-up, then typically after several seconds, or several minutes it will straighten out. The 2 units I returned started doing this after a couple of weeks, and after a couple of more weeks would not straighten out, and got much worse. The picture was horrible, kind of a combo of drop-outs and RF interference. What I mean by that is that "here" when drop-outs occur, a section of the picture disappears momentarily, but in this case the horizontal sections are mostly "there" but separated, and "moving" separately from each other (like RF interference). The problem may be made more extreme by the fact that ch2 is so close to "low signal strength" normally, that about 5% of the time it has drop-outs anyway. The odd thing is that while we were waiting for replacement VRX2s to arrive, we used our original VRX in the same location, with the same cabling without incident (almost, it acted similar to our current VRX2, in that we sometimes got drop-outs initially, but they would normally straighten out).


Just to reiterate, when the "returned" VRX2s where turned on, every TV in the house was unwatchable on ch2, turn it off and they are all fine, repeat, same thing.


Epvision said they never really found anything wrong with the returned units, but I am not sure if they actually tested them on the ch2 frequency, because the number of customers that consider that channel important must be extremely small.
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post #2373 of 2392 Old 01-10-2015, 03:01 PM - Thread Starter
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You are describing a typical "on the cliff" situation.
1. Don't go by those signal indicators. They are not accurate nor consistent. There are different ways they can be designed. I guess it's better than nothing, but there is little pattern to different receivers (TV's, DVR's or separate tuners).
2. Using the VRX and having that affect other sets seems to confirm the 'on the cliff' situation. It's somewhat odd that a tuner would emit some type of 'interference' affecting other sets, though anything is possible.

How are your other sets wired? How long is each cable; from the antenna to the 1st set, the 2nd set & the third set? How are they split? In what order are they? (A diagram would help )

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Abundant OTA television is what makes this country different from all others. Lets keep it this way. If you like Wi-Fi so much, OTA fits right in. After all, it is wireless.
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post #2374 of 2392 Old 01-12-2015, 11:14 PM
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This is the setup we had all the ch2 trouble with the two VRX2s that we exchanged. We have since changed this somewhat, and to save "writing a novel", suffice it to say it was "for a reason".
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post #2375 of 2392 Old 01-13-2015, 02:40 PM
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Is Mon-Fri guide recording working yet?

Has anyone found a workaround to Mon-Fri recording not working properly other than doing daily recording for each day of the week? When I use Mon-Fri it works for one week then sets up a recording for Sun instead of the following Mon and stalls.

When I do set up daily timers I quickly hit the maximum allowed according to the PVR even though I'm no where near it.
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post #2376 of 2392 Old 01-13-2015, 03:20 PM - Thread Starter
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windermere;
I can see why there is a problem.
1. Running a preamp & and DA,
2. Too many sets.

How many RF channels do you have?
Are there any FM transmitter nearby (within say 5-10 miles or less), especially if they are near to being in line with the direction the antenna is aimed?

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Abundant OTA television is what makes this country different from all others. Lets keep it this way. If you like Wi-Fi so much, OTA fits right in. After all, it is wireless.
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post #2377 of 2392 Old 01-13-2015, 04:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post
windermere;
I can see why there is a problem.
1. Running a preamp & and DA,
2. Too many sets.

How many RF channels do you have?
Are there any FM transmitter nearby (within say 5-10 miles or less), especially if they are near to being in line with the direction the antenna is aimed?

We have tried it with and without the DA, and we tried hooking the output of the preamp directly to the cable that feeds the VRX2 and one TV(from what I can remember, with no difference).
We only have 2 channels, period. There is no FM transmitters within 30 miles of us.
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post #2378 of 2392 Old 01-13-2015, 05:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Sorry, I don't know what to tell you.

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Abundant OTA television is what makes this country different from all others. Lets keep it this way. If you like Wi-Fi so much, OTA fits right in. After all, it is wireless.
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post #2379 of 2392 Old 01-13-2015, 08:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post
Sorry, I don't know what to tell you.

Thanks anyway!
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post #2380 of 2392 Old 01-18-2015, 08:36 PM
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recording playback problems for one OTA station

Hi,

I've had my epVision PHD-VRX2 for over a year now and have been happy with it. It was a replacement for my previous PHD-208.

The problem that I'm having is that one of my OTA channels (RF9; Ch6, KVIE Sacramento; Walnut Grove) has dropouts during playback of the recorded video. This dropping effect is different then a typical weak-signal block-breakup. I don't see any of that in the viewed nor recorded video. 4 bars seems sufficient for a clear picture to watch. If I watch AND record at the same time, then what I watch is OK, but playing back the recorded video later has skipping problems (a few seconds dropped every now and then constantly). Of all of my channels, this is the only one that has this problem.

According to the VRX2 signal strength meter, I'm only getting getting 4 bars for Ch6. And TVfool and AntennaWeb both confirm that my signal reception is indeed in the fringe region for this channel. I do have a big antenna 30 feet off the ground and a preamp on the antenna.

My external hard disk was formatted by the VRX2 as ext2 and the testing tool reports 19M/sec so I don't think that the problem is with the disk. And this is the only channel with this issue.


The thing that is odd is that if I watch Ch6, it is fine. If I watch Ch6 and record Ch6, then what I watch is fine, but the recorded version skips a few seconds constantly. I've tried recording on Tuner1 and Tuner2 -- both do the same thing. I suspect that the problem is due to the low signal strength, but I don't understand why what I see is OK and only the recorded version is problematic.

I've done everything that I can to boost the Ch6 (RF9) signal strength and this is as good as it gets.


I assume that they fork off of the same digital stream? Does anyone have any insights into this problem of the watched version being different than the recorded version?

Thanks,

Scott
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post #2381 of 2392 Old 01-19-2015, 04:05 AM - Thread Starter
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I would say it is a odd playback record and/or problem. Have you tried another HDD? I assume you are using a HDD, not one of those memory sticks?
The other distant possibility is something that station is doing that is causing the problem, not signal related. Is there Guide data and how long does it extend out?

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Abundant OTA television is what makes this country different from all others. Lets keep it this way. If you like Wi-Fi so much, OTA fits right in. After all, it is wireless.
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post #2382 of 2392 Old 01-19-2015, 09:12 AM
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I could be mistaken, but it sounds like it may be a "mild version" of the problems I had been having with ch2 (see previous posts). Although there was no agreement from the experts, I believe my problem was caused by the VRX2 emitting RF interference, however, I would think that in your case the fact that you can watch it while recording without a problem, may indicate that is not what is happening here. Non the less, after my experience, I would not be surprised if it was something within the VRX2 that was causing it. In my case, exchanging the VRX2 made a difference.

Last edited by windermere; 01-19-2015 at 10:24 AM.
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post #2383 of 2392 Old 01-19-2015, 01:30 PM
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It's hard to tell from afar, but this sounds different. RFI should affect both live viewing and recording, but this is only affecting the recording.

It sort of sounds like the data rate from the station is occasionally getting too high for the HDD, which is hard to explain; given the results of your speed test, your HDD should easily keep up with any station. But perhaps the HDD is starting to have some sort of trouble. If possible I'd try another.
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post #2384 of 2392 Old 01-20-2015, 11:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post
I would say it is a odd playback record and/or problem. Have you tried another HDD? I assume you are using a HDD, not one of those memory sticks?
The other distant possibility is something that station is doing that is causing the problem, not signal related. Is there Guide data and how long does it extend out?
I have been using this HDD (see my post #2079 )
Quote:
This is the USB 2TB WD Elements disk that I have:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002QEBMCI

The USB external hard disk that I am using has its own power supply, and it works fine with all other recording channels. But I will see if I can find a different hard disk; perhaps a Samsung 850 Solid State disk.


I don't use the Guide; I use TitanTV and set the recordings manually using time/date. But I'll check the Guide for Ch6 (RF9) tonight and see how far out it extends.


Regarding the RF interference issue, since Ch6 (RF9) is the lowest channel that I receive then that might be an issue. It doesn't explain why I can see the station clearly; I only have problems recording it. Unless the RF EMI is messing with the digital-to-digital stream chips somehow (the chips that take the digital stream and put onto the USB cable).


The problem channel is Ch6, RF9, KVIE, PBS. Note that the next highest RF next channel that I get (Ch10, RF10, KXTV, ABC) doesn't have these problems:
  • Ch6 RF9 is at 186-192 MHz and TVfool says I should see a signal level of -65dBm.
  • Ch10 RF10 is at 192-198 MHz and TVfool says I should see a signal level of -63.6dBm.
The VRX2 signal strength meter does indeed show a difference of 1 bar between these to channels. And these are adjacent elements on my antenna. See attached tvfool PNG output table for reference. In the table, the ones that I've marked off in red are in Fresno (south) and my antenna is pointing towards Sacramento (the Walnut Grove antenna farm 60 miles north of me).




Regarding the anti-recording flag in the digital stream, I would assume that if this were the problem then the VRX2 wouldn't record the show at all. As it is, it just skips a few seconds of audio/video every now and then (it appears as random skips, not regular; sometimes numerous skips in a row, other times it is clean for a couple minutes).




Regarding the signal itself, does the VRX2 have a way to show the data rate in real time? I haven't seen anything like this in the menu system.


Thanks to all, I will check-out these issues tonight.


Scott
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post #2385 of 2392 Old 01-20-2015, 04:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Nothing to do with signal strength or reception.

Back a year year and a half or better ago there were a couple of owners that had issues with one station in their market. I don't remember if it was the same network or not, but I believe it was PSIP data related. It was only affecting this recorder. I don't think there was any closure on the problem either. I would say that is the problem. The only test I can think of would be someone in their engineering department dropping that data stream and see it the problem remains. That would be a very tough request to get fulfilled.

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post #2386 of 2392 Old 01-20-2015, 07:24 PM
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RIP 2015, after 3 yrs my VRX finally died yesterday. I tried re-booting, updating FW, the machine just has a life of its own. My screen menu appeared suddenly and the guide starts scrolling by itself. Now it powers up, then boots and restart, then reboot, then turns off, etc..

My remote is half functioning with the main keys not working anymore, but I was using the guide as a workaround.

Would I recommend it : no, I doubt the 2nd version is better, but this is pure speculation on my part since I never tried it
Was the tuner that good : not really in my case, it got the job done, no more no less
The remote is a real piece of crap
Not having the ability to output 1080i was an issue, it was cleverly not mentioned in the specs (this should have been listed as a limitation)
Picture adjustments : I never really trusted this machine, since several settings had no control anyway. I think they should all be flat and let the real boys play with it (my OPPO and my Pana glass)
Sound was OK but not great, I suspect the HDMI connection had also some limitations
Support from the supplier, I guess it was OK but definitely minimal, FW did not solved much, It just kept us guessing what it was doing

Hope this helps
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post #2387 of 2392 Old 01-21-2015, 11:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by videobruce View Post
Nothing to do with signal strength or reception.

Back a year year and a half or better ago there were a couple of owners that had issues with one station in their market. I don't remember if it was the same network or not, but I believe it was PSIP data related. It was only affecting this recorder. I don't think there was any closure on the problem either. I would say that is the problem. The only test I can think of would be someone in their engineering department dropping that data stream and see it the problem remains. That would be a very tough request to get fulfilled.
Thanks videobruce.


In going through the older posts, I found these posts (#1252, 1266, 1271, 1292) which allude to the playback skipping problem being due to data in the CC stream. As described, the problem that smithdoor and videobruce were discussing appears identical to what I am seeing. In smithdoor's case, the problem began when ABC added data to their CC stream. So there appears to be a "before" and "after" data point for his experiences.


In my case, PBS is the problem. I know that I used to be able to record PBS, but now I can't. At the time, sd or vb were able to plug the external hard disk to a Windows computer and successfully play the file. This indicates that the problem is in playback process in the VRX2, not in the recorded material itself.


A solution which sd&sb mentioned is to record the 2nd subchannel instead of the main channel (if it is showing the same show). Seems odd since a recording records the entire stream (all subchannels in the 6 MHz stream); but since the problem is in playback then perhaps the subchannel is handled differently or contains different CC data (i.e. a software bug in the PHD-VRX2 playback or the network only puts this "data" in the primary channel's CC stream and the subchannel playback doesn't see it).




Anyway, at this point it looks like I'm stuck other than playing back a subchannel instead of the main channel. I really like the sensitivity of the PHD-VRX2's tuner compared to my old PHD-205LE (2011).


Does anyone have experience with the ChannelMaster CM7500 series tuner's sensitivity? Not being able to record clear main-channel PBS is a deal-breaker for my household.


Thanks,

Scott

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post #2388 of 2392 Old 01-21-2015, 12:10 PM
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I should be able to post a VRX vs DVR+ comparison within the next few days as my replacement DVR+ is on its way. Keep in mind that this will be purely location based (Montreal in my case) and tuner sensitivity is location and equipment (antenna-amp) dependant. From the multiple reviews and comments I have seen they should be fairly equivalent.
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post #2389 of 2392 Old 01-21-2015, 12:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 645824 View Post
Does anyone have experience with the ChannelMaster CM7500 series tuner's sensitivity?
There is no CM 7500 to my knowledge. The CM 7400 had a bad tuner from most of the reports you'll find on this forum. The CM DVR+ has a better tuner and is the current model.
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post #2390 of 2392 Old 01-21-2015, 12:26 PM
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There is no CM 7500 to my knowledge. The CM 7400 had a bad tuner from most of the reports you'll find on this forum. The CM DVR+ has a better tuner and is the current model.
The product no. for the DVR+ is ''CM7500GB16''
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post #2391 of 2392 Old 01-21-2015, 12:41 PM
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The product no. for the DVR+ is ''CM7500GB16''
Yes, that's it. There appear to be several versions of the CM7500 on Amazon in the series to add or subtract features (16GB flash, 1TB disk, IR extender, etc.) to yield various price points. The ChannelMaster store page has the base 16GB unit.


Can anyone comment on the PHD-VRX2 tuner vs. the CM7500* tuner?


I bought the VRX2 specifically because it had a better tuner than my old PHD-205LE (and the VRX2 does indeed have a better tuner).


Thanks,

Scott

Last edited by 645824; 01-21-2015 at 03:33 PM.
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post #2392 of 2392 Unread Today, 10:15 AM
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This reply is a follow-on to posts #2384 , #2387 , and #2391 on the PHD-VRX2's skipping problem during playback of the primary channel (i.e. x.1 channels).


To confirm the hypothesis that videobruce proposed, I recorded channel 6.1, channel 6.2, and channel 6.3 separately (5 minutes each; spaced 10 minutes apart). So the PHD-VRX2 was only recording 1 thing at a time. I also watched the show while the recorder recorded.


While viewing the channels as they were live, everything was fine. But on playback, channel 6.1 exhibited the skipping problem mentioned previously (skipping forward several seconds; it did this about a dozen times over the 5 minute recording). Channel 6.2 and channel 6.3 were fine.


Recall that vb&sd previously demonstrated that the recoded files were fine and played back correctly on a computer; but not using the VRX2's player. But I haven't copied my 3 files over yet to a computer to confirm in my case.




I am now in contact with epVision support and I'll pass along what I learn...


Thanks,

Scott
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